Trreating Giardia in Puppies

by Chris and Heather

Reader Question: How to Treat Recurring Giardia in Puppies

I rescued my puppy from a local rescue and I had her stool tested. She came up positive with giardia, I have treated her twice with two rounds of antibiotics. I am re-testing her again next week. What do I do if she comes up positive again? I immediately clean up her stool right after she goes with a doggie bag. Sometimes the stool is runny so I hose it down on the grass, is this enough to clean it up?

If she sniffs in that area and if my older dog does, are they getting re-infected? Do I wash the outside toys, tennis balls, etc? She doesn't poop in her crate, only outside.

Suggestion from our Veterinarian on how to treat Giardia in puppies


Treating Giardia in puppies can be tricky. Scenarios like the one you describe are fairly common. It takes a strong and well-functioning immune system to completely eradicate Giardia infections, something that young puppies are often lacking.

I tend to handle cases like the in the following manner:
  • Treat the puppy with several rounds of appropriate anti-Giardia medications (metronidazole and fenbendazole are good).

  • Support the puppy’s immune system with excellent nutrition and ensuring that he or she is free of other parasites, infections, etc.

  • Provide good hygiene (pick up poop ASAP, wash down contaminated hard surfaces with bleach water, etc.).

  • Wait for the puppy to mature and keep your fingers crossed!

  • Talk to your veterinarian to determine what the best course of action is in your situation.

    Best of luck,

    Jennifer Coates, DVM

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